Today, I’m Nero; Let it Burn.

It’s early in the morning and I’d like to turn on the TV. Ultimately though, that would lead to the national news and their dreaded panels or the local news where I would learn whose tractor flipped over or how the local chess team did. Other than that, it’s commercials about erectile dysfunction, Flo selling insurance or someone reminding me of how I should be feeling about an issue, which is frustrating and annoying. Keeping an opinion to yourself, is apparently a “cop out” in today’s world.

I get it though, we are in trouble. As a society, we’ve actually ground to a halt; paralyzed. The media, the people, the politicians; it’s either “this way or that”. Compromising, which used to be an act of meeting in the middle, is now seen as “giving in”; failing to get your way or “selling out” your cause. We are inundated daily with opinions and being forced to choose a side; and that side had better agree with the “popular” position or you will suffer certain backlash from their group. Well today, I’ll be Nero while Rome burns. If me not engaging in this mess matters that much, then burn baby,  burn, we’ll rebuild again tomorrow.

I don’t feel like turning on the TV or fighting with those who disagree with whatever position I have or don’t have and I definitely don’t care whether the chess team won or lost. Today, I don’t want to hear your opinion and tomorrow’s not looking too good either. However, erectile dysfunction is something to ponder, as I am getting older, so I might need to watch that commercial again.

No, I think I’ll just read a good book this morning and watch the sunrise. We’re still allowed to do that, right?



The human male, a plague on humanity.

As a white male, this is a tragic assessment of my gender. There is no science, behavioral or biological, that can explain away our unforgivable behavior.


I simply cannot find words that are strong enough to describe my bewilderment at “the why”. What the !@?# is wrong with us? Is it a physical or a chemical thing? “I’m sorry sir, I’m afraid you’ve been diagnosed with a terminal case of Male. Unfortunately, it’s incurable and you’re just going to have to live with being an asshole.”  Think I’m overreacting? Test question:

What is the gender of every School shooter, Church shooter, Public Event shooter, Highway shooter, Shopping Mall shooter and Military Base shooter? Who is plowing into crowds with a vehicle, hi-jacking planes, car-jacking cars, stabbing people in crowds and who is also most likely to shoot up a restaurant, rob you, assault you or rape you? Who is also most likely to be banned from living within X number of feet from a school? Who is starting forest fires, abusing animals and most likely to drive stupid? Hint: Males

I genuinely believe that if an “animal” species’ behavior was this bad, we’d be exterminating them or at the very least, controlling their numbers. Actually, I think we do that with bulls. Maybe the problem and it’s solution have been staring us right in the face the whole time; Balls.

It’s easy to blame guns, society, bad parenting, politics or Bugs Bunny, but at the end of the day, the true problem is patently obvious; he’s walking the streets and waiting at a crime scene near you.

Until we wake up and face reality, these tragedies are going keep happening especially when the cause is in charge of fixing the problem.




Aging, Writing

Of Fathers and Sons

Recently, I came across a picture of my father and me.  It was the last time I saw him.  It was around 2012.  Even then unfortunately, I knew how this story would end.IMG_9901

My father’s demons were his everyday companion, always ready and eager to steal from him any joy or happiness that he might find.  They had arrived early in his life and they were with him until the end.  That end came a year ago this October and he died in the worst way.  He was alone.

Life had been cruel to him this last couple of years.  My sister passed away and he began to unravel.  He made choices that drove people away, choices that ultimately ended his life.  His family lovingly tried, some more than others, to save him from himself.  Ultimately the choice was his and he was tired.  His demons and the alcohol were unrelenting.

I wasn’t always there for him.  I didn’t want to be. Though I was his only son, I was most likely also one of his many demons.  He desperately wanted our relationship to be different.  A father and his son, but his drinking was getting worse and I was unwilling to endure his temper, his pain, his life.  We were different and it was easier to stay away.  I was not part of the loving family that surrounded him, my Aunt, Uncles, Cousins, Step-Mother and Sisters were.  In the end, I was hundreds of miles away when my Step Sister told me that he was gone.

I now find myself reflecting on the last 10 years of our relationship.   It is filled with distance and quick phone calls.  He was always there for me but I was not for him. I made that choice.  I’ll live with that choice.  I accept that I could not have saved him, but it would have eased my conscience to have tried.   I am thankful for those that did what I was unwilling to do.

I have his laugh and I miss him.  I am slowly learning to appreciate what I once resented.  He made mistakes, he was human and he was my father.   In the end, we failed each other, him early and me later.   He is gone now and his demons with him.  He now lives peacefully in the memory of those who knew him and those who loved him.